Disney Dino Land – Dinosaur Icons
When starting this project I wanted to make something for my 3 year old nephew. His birthday was coming up and I thought it would be something fun I could make and turn into a coloring book for him. I bounced around a lot of ideas, but the only one to stick was dinosaurs. I worked at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Dino Land so I had a pretty good idea of the type of dinosaurs I wanted to create. They had to be bright colors, good and bad dinos, and different types so my nephew could learn them. Pictured left are some of my rough sketches and ideas.
I posted it to our class’s slack group, but didn’t get many responses. I was wondering if I picked something to generic. When I started to draw them in illustrator is when I started to see what style I was going for. I started with the Pteranodon because he was simple. When I sketched him in my book I didn’t have any reference, I just tried to remember what one looked like and drew it. To my surprise it was my favorite sketch of them all. He became even cuter on Adobe Illustrator so I copied him and started to adjust his features to make other dinos.
I was super proud and excited about my rough draft! It reminded me of all the good times working in Dino Land. After my draft I added some more such as the woolly mammoth and a dodo bird, I had stayed up really late and finished drawing all 12 icons. I’m still new to Illustrator, and really wanted these dinos to look good so I went into my Professors office for some of his professional feedback. Cory Kerr looked over my work and found some sloppy mistakes from staying up so late. I thought I was close to finishing, but then he told me to add bodies..
I had to finish the project by the next day because I would be out of town for a class excursion and wouldn’t have internet. He took like two minutes and drew a body on the dodo and said it shouldn’t take me too long. Of course for him it wouldn’t but for someone who’s first time making a professional graphic, it did. I stayed up again and added 10 bodies to my dinosaur heads. I decided I wanted to keep the bodies simple, and to add some charter I created them with big heads and little bodies. My most challenging dinosaur was the brontosaurs He is so simple and for some reason I couldn’t figure out why he looked so bad. I kept messing with his eyes and re-did him from scratch 4 different times.
It’s obvious to me now, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. Then I realized he had his mouth closed. All the dinos that don’t have a unique nose had their mouths open. I did that and then realized his eyes were rounder then the rest. Once I fixed that he fit right in with the dino club. I love how these turned out! Kerr was right, it needed the bodies to complete the project and give it a polished look. I’m excited to print these little graphics and share them with my nephew.